Ira Ortigosa Pascual

Ira Ortigosa Pascual

Department of Modern Languages

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Thesis: Lost in Translation?: A Case Study in Minority Language Translation of the Subtitling and Dubbing of Basque Cinema
Supervisors: Dr Emma Tyler and Dr Andrew Watts
PhD in Modern Languages


Ira is Basque Language Tutor in the Department of Modern Languages in the University of Birmingham. As a translator of Basque, English and Spanish, Ira has a strong theoretical background and has previously researched these methods for her dissertation and several translation commissions. Ira has researched and worked closely with Basque language cinema in the University of Birmingham too, building strong working relationships with B-Film as well as the Basque Film Archive in San Sebastian, and gaining access to all the required materials and data.


Ira’s thesis investigates the relationship between minority language cinema and translation. Language is an essential part of a nation’s identity and culture; identity cannot be defined without mentioning language, and vice versa, cinema is an important medium for putting into words a society’s identity and translation is a necessary medium for cinema to be understood worldwide.

This thesis focuses on the analysis of audiovisual translation in minority language cinema and takes Basque language cinema as its case study. It will examine whether subtitling and dubbing are accurate and appropriate for a non-Basque speaking audience, both domestic and international. With the Basque Country currently working on its peace process, Basque language cinema presents a complex web of political, social and linguistic identity, worthy of analysing, but incomprehensible without translation analysis.